by Tyler Peck, sports information graduate
FLORENCE, S.C. - The No. 4 Georgia College & State University Bobcat men's tennis team (11-1, 6-0 PBC) defeated the No. 11 Patriots of Francis Marion University (10-3, 2-3 PBC) 6-3 earlier today (March 21) continuing the GCSU winning steak to nine.
The Bobcats started things off by taking two in doubles action to lead the Patriots 2-1. Georgia College's first doubles team of Justin Pickham (Armidale, Australia) and Erick Siqueria (Sao Paulo, Brazil) defeated Oshada Wijemanne and Dilshod Sharifi 8-1.
The Sao Paulo native duo of Joao Casagrande and Francis Yoshimoto took down the twosome of Matthew Keth and Noah van Moerkerken 8-3 at second doubles. 8-3 was also the score of third doubles when the Patriots' Dirk Bair and Mario Kieck beat the Bobcats' Max Beliankou (Minsk, Belarus) and Leo Bernardes (Sao Paulo, Brazil), teaming for the first time.
Siqueria defeated Wijemanne 6-3, 7-6 (7-3) at first singles. Siqueria improves to 7-4 on the year. Pickham took down Sharifi 7-6, 0-6, 6-3. The senior is now 9-2 in singles action on the season.
Georgia College's Yoshimoto served breadsticks to Francis Marion's Kieck 6-1, 6-1. Yoshimoto continues his winning streak at nine matches and is 11-1 at third singles for the Bobcats.
At fourth singles, Beliankou fell to Karl Rogers 6-3, 1-6, 6-2. Beliankou's seven-match win streak comes to end as he is now 9-3 on the 2009 season.
Bernardes got the victory over Jack Bishop 6-2, 6-1. Bernardes has won four straight matches improving his record to 4-3. The Patriots' Bair beat Casagrande 6-1, 7-5 at the sixth singles spot.
The Bobcats are back in action at the White Sand Invitational in Pensacola, Fla. The GCSU men will face No. 27 University of North Alabama March 24.
Visit www.GCSUBobcats.com to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GCSU Athletics Hall of Fame. The GCSU Department of Athletics sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, GCSU prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the Bobcats' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement.